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Tuesday, 16 May 1972
Page: 1704

Senator Douglas McClelland (NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the Minister representing the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice:

(1)   Is compliance by commercial television stations with the programming and Australian content requirements of the Australian Broadcasting Control Board assessed on a 48 week basis.

(2)   Is the performance of individual stations, so far as Australian content requirements are concerned, kept under close and continuous examination.

(3)   Since the Board's revised Australian content requirements have been operating has it been necessary for the Board to raise with any individual commercial station the question of any adverse trends which might reflect on its Australian content percentage over a 48 week period; if so, which stations.

Senator GREENWOOD The PostmasterGeneral has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1)   Yes; although results for the statistical year 1971-72 cannot be based on 48 out of52 weeks because changed Australian content requirements came into operation from 20th September 1971. It is expected that results for the new requirements will be based, therefore, on a 36-week period between 20th September 1971 and 25th June 1972. The basis for assessment of Australian content performance will revert to 48 weeks for the 1972- 73 statistical year.

(2)   Yes.

(3)   The Board informs all stations promptly of their Australian content performances for each 28-day statistical period. In a case where a station does not reach one or more of the requirements in a statistical period, the Board brings the matter to the attention of the station manager, and requests his acknowledgment of the figures.

Apart from more recently established country stations which do not possess videotape facilities, no serious continuing deficiencies have become apparent which would indicate that stations will fail to meet the new requirements over the full statistical period.

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